Interactive fiction




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Alpha1v (アルファ) is an interactive fiction and eroge[1] game developed and published by Square, released for the NEC PC-8801NEC PC-9801Fujitsu FM-7, and Sharp X1 systems in 1986Alpha uses a text parser to interpret the player’s instructions and displays the results on screen.


The storyline of Alpha progresses as the player inputs short commands carried out by the game’s heroine.[2] Similarly to another interactive fiction game by Square, The Death Trap, but contrary to most games in the genre, the situations confronted by the main character are presented in still pictures. The text is displayed within a white-bordered blue background, also present in message windows of the early Final Fantasy installments. Hidden characters appear in the background of most scenes, and such as a ninja appearing outside a car window.[3]


Alpha is set in the future after the Earth’s natural resources have been completely drained. Humanity is forced to embark on a centuries-long trip to the titular planet on the space ship Daedalus.[4] Because technology for suspended animation does not exist, only the distant descendants of the original passengers and crew are alive by the time the game takes place. The main character, Chris, begins the game with amnesia and a terrorist attack quickly draws her into a revolution which aims to overthrow the dictatorial Daedalus computer system.[4] As Chris interacts with the revolutionary group, she uncovers the true nature of Alpha, the Daedalus, and herself.[5]


Alpha development began in January 1986.[6] The game features animation techniques.[3] Artist Minato Shibuya did illustrations for the Alpha game manual.[7] Nobuo Uematsu was in charge of background music.[3]


Alpha is one of Nobuo Uematsu‘s earliest video game soundtracks.[8] A promotional soundtrack was released on flexi disc on August 7, 1986. It contains the tracks “Prologue ~Theme from Alpha~” and “CHRIS”.[9] The game was praised at its release for its animation quality and the rich facial expressions of its characters.[4] A prison sequence that is repeated multiple times throughout the game became notorious among fans for depicting Chris naked.[5]


Alpha was unique in that it was an eroge, or erotic, title from game developer Square.[10] The game is noted its difficulty, in that there are points where if the player loses an important item, they may not be able to retrieve it again, and if players make a mistake at crucial scenes, there is no opportunity to do it over.[3] The game does not end if these things happen, but players can progress no further in the game either.[3] In 2014, the game was released on a retro gaming distribution service called “Project Egg”.[2]


  1. ^ DeWoody, Lucas (August 12, 2005). “Love, War and Fantasy – The Life of Square” Retrieved 2009-05-09.
  2. Jump up to:a b “レトロゲーム配信サービス『プロジェクトEGG』にて 2014年5月27日に『ALPHA(PC-9801版)』をリリース”. 4Gamer. May 27, 2014. Retrieved June 2, 2020.
  3. Jump up to:a b c d e チャレンジ!!パソコンアドベンチャーゲーム&ロールプレイングゲーム 2 (in Japanese). Denpa Shinbunsha. 1987-10-20. ISBN 4-9250-7533-0.
  4. Jump up to:a b c “ALPHA /EGG” (in Japanese). Project EGG. 2013-12-24. Retrieved 2016-02-01.
  5. Jump up to:a b 山下章 (1987). チャレンジ!!パソコン AVG & RPG II (in Japanese) (1987年10月20日の改装小型版(オリジナルは1987年1月) ed.). 電波新聞社. pp. 73–82.

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